The Queen has spent a night in hospital for “preliminary investigations”, Buckingham Palace has confirmed.
The monarch, who was this week ordered to rest by doctors and advised to miss a trip to Northern Ireland, returned to Windsor Castle on Thursday (British time), and remained in “good spirits”.
“Following medical advice to rest for a few days, the Queen attended hospital on Wednesday afternoon for some preliminary investigations, returning to Windsor Castle at lunchtime today, and remains in good spirits,” a Buckingham Palace spokesman said.
It is understood the trip to hospital on Wednesday afternoon was expected to be for a short stay for some preliminary investigations, so was not announced by the palace at the time, as well as to protect the Queen’s medical privacy.
A royal source said the monarch stayed at the King Edward VII hospital in central London for practical reasons and that her medical team had taken a cautious approach.
She was back at her desk on Thursday afternoon, undertaking light duties.
The 95-year-old monarch was said to be disappointed not to be able to travel to Northern Ireland on Wednesday, and reluctantly heeded the advice of her royal physicians.
She has had a busy schedule since returning from Balmoral at the start of October.
On Tuesday night, she hosted a drinks reception at Windsor for billionaire business leaders such as Bill Gates after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson convened a green investment conference ahead of the COP26 climate summit. She had appeared in good health then, smiling happily as she met the guests.
The Queen is Britain’s longest reigning monarch. She will celebrate her Platinum Jubilee – 70 years on the throne – next year.
In recent months, she has been pictured out and about at the Royal Windsor Horse Show and Ascot in recent months, and still enjoys riding her own ponies.
Last week, she used a walking stick for what is believed to be the first time at a major public event when she attended a service marking the centenary of the Royal British Legion.
Earlier this week, it emerged the 95-year-old Queen had turned down an Oldie of the Year trophy because she felt she did not meet the criteria, believing “you are only as old as you feel”.
The monarch “politely but firmly” declined the magazine award, but sent a message with her “warmest best wishes”.
Earlier this year, Prince Philip, her 99-year-old husband of more than seven decades, died at Windsor Castle.
The Queen’s next major engagement is at the end of the month when she welcomes world leaders at the opening of the United Nations climate change summit in Glasgow.